It’s The End Of The World, Boom!

The occasional theater goer such as myself would often delight in plays that unravel slowly and fill the audience in with clues to what is happening. A good play surprises the audience by having them assume something and then break that assumption later.

boom, written by Peter Sinn Nachtrieb, is such a play. Add a lot of humor, and you have this, a very entertaining piece! It’s about Jules (Jon Chew), an archetypal nerdy marine biologist who posts an ad on Craigslist – “sex to change the course of the world”. This ad lures Jo (Sharon Lam), a feisty, sex-charged journalism student with a sailor’s mouth. Comets hit the planet, destroying everything and everyone except them (and a fishtank) because they are safe in a bunker.

What is there left to do, but to re-populate the human race?

Easier said than done, since these two are polar opposites, and Jules is possibly gay due to his “non-random erections on exposure to members of the same sex”. Jon is hilarious in his role here, as an absorbed scientist, much like Sheldon Cooper of The Big Bang Theory.

There is moderate wit and punnery, a lot of cursing (to comedic effect) and there are sexual scenes. This is where theater uses self-censorship to build mystery and a puzzle (as opposed to TV or cinema where a lot more is laid out to the viewer… and censorship is applied externally.)

BB Ostella Adam plays Barbara, a narrator who breaks the fourth wall by talking to the audience, and provides very subtle clues as the play progresses. She often defuses the tension by pausing the scene and saying something random, with great comedic effect.

The humor is accessible, and the plot/puzzle factor clever enough for a casual night out. A good play to bring a date to! I don’t know really what else I can say, without spoiling it for the audience, but I’d highly recommend you watch this.

It is no wonder then, that this was America’s most produced play in 2009-2010. The characters still identify themselves as being from states in the US of A (and the Craigslist reference), though even if they localized it, it wouldn’t have made any difference to the story.

Of course, there are other plays about the end of the world – I remember Samuel Beckett’s Endgame – what an overwrought, overserious, draggy play that was.

Anyway! Here’s the official site.

What: boom
Where: Pentas 2, KL Performing Arts Centre
18, 21-25 February 2012 – 8:30pm
19, 26 February 2012 – 3pm
How Much: RM35 (Concession at RM23 for Students, Disabled, TAS cardholders and UNHCR cardholders)
Who: Sharon Lam, Jon Chew, BB Ostella Adam

klpac Box Office: +603 4047 9000
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